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Press Release

Last of Three Deming Drug Traffickers Pleads Guilty to Federal Methamphetamine Charges

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE – Sylvia Grado, 31, of Deming, N.M., pled guilty yesterday afternoon in federal court in Las Cruces, N.M., to methamphetamine trafficking charges.

Sylvia Grado was arrested in July 2014, together with co-defendants Juan Grado, 34, and Carlos Magallanes, 34, also of Deming, N.M., on a seven-count indictment alleging methamphetamine trafficking charges.  Count 1 charged the three defendants with conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine in Luna County, N.M., between Oct. 2012 and May 2013.  Counts 2 through 6 charged Juan Grado and Magallanes with distributing methamphetamine in Luna County on several occasions. Count 7 charged Sylvia Grado with distributing methamphetamine on May 14, 2013.

During yesterday’s hearing, Sylvia Grado pled guilty to Counts 1 and 7 of the indictment.  In her plea agreement, Sylvia Grado admitted that between Oct. 2012 and May 2013, she conspired with Juan Grado and Magallanes to distribute methamphetamine.  She further admitted that on May 14, 2013, she distributed approximately 28 grams of methamphetamine to an undercover law enforcement officer.

Juan Grado pled guilty on Jan. 2, 2015, to Counts 1, 3, and 6 of the indictment, and admitted distributing approximately 453 grams of pure methamphetamine.  Magallanes pled guilty on Jan. 16, 2015, to Counts 1, 2, 4, and 5 of the indictment, and admitted to conspiring with Juan Grado and others to distribute methamphetamine from Oct. 2012 through Jan. 2013.

At sentencing, Sylvia Grado and Juan Grado each face a mandatory minimum of ten years and a maximum of life in federal prison.  Magallanes faces a mandatory minimum of five years and a maximum of 40 years in prison at sentencing.  Sylvia Grado remains on conditions of release and under pretrial supervision pending her sentencing hearing, while Juan Grado and Magallanes remain in federal custody pending their sentencing hearings.

This case was investigated by the Las Cruces office of Homeland Security Investigations and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Luis A. Martinez of the U.S. Attorney’s Las Cruces Branch Office.

Updated February 5, 2015